Tracking AI in Nigeria
Bird flu has hit Nigeria, the continent's most populous
country, hardest. With the potential for new outbreaks, the Nigerian Agriculture
Ministry, backed by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) and the European
Union, has set up a new surveillance scheme to help track avian flu across the
After the first cases of bird flu were discovered at Sambawa Farms in
January, the virus appeared to have spread quickly through other regions of
Nigeria. In the next eight months H5N1 was reported in 14 of Nigeria's 36
Compensation after the outbreaks earlier this year was paid mainly to the
big commercial farms because they were the ones that complied with official
requirements reporting and culling by government veterinary teams; but even the
compensation process has run into problems, with payments stopped in July after
the government department in charge ran out of funds.
farmers are the most vulnerable.
estimates that they
oversee more than 60 % of Nigeria's 140 million poultry. Several Birnin Yero
residents said they usually made a meal of their birds to cut their losses once
they showed signs of terminal sickness, and they have not reported the recent
poultry deaths because they were not included in previous compensation payments
and, therefore, said they fail to see how they will benefit from reporting to
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